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00:30:00

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Us 8, Fung 3, San Francisco 3, Mr. Sanchez 3, C.u. 2, Garcia 2, The City 2, Neigh 1, Forer 1, Dpw 1, Ask Us 1, Scott Sanchez 1, Mr. Fung 1, Goh 1, Jesse Nelson 1, Ms. Tong 1, Anthony 1,
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  SFGTV    [untitled]  

    March 13, 2011
    3:30 - 4:00am PDT  

3:30am
a six-month extension to summit -- submit their site plan. there was a 1998 application which was before you that was not linked to this project at that time. the extension was granted for six months. submit the application, pursue it diligently. the 1998 application was subsequently canceled by the department last august, august 19, 2010, we sent if forer -- this for cancellation but -- because we determined there was abandonment from the project. we found that the underlying conditional use authorization is sense invalid. the environmental entitlements are also stale and invalid so. any application for the department to approve.
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we would have to take this back to the planning commission for their review. that is where we are currently with this application. it does pose, again, similar to the filbert street case, some interesting questions there board may have regarding building permits for the c.u. the permit holder would like to argue that they are, in fact, actively working on the project and would like the permit to be essentially reinstated but we found that we're not getting the work that we need out of the application. so i'm available for any questions. thank you. >> thank you. ms. tong. >> good evening, commissioners. my name is terry tong with l.f. property.
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actually, i already -- we already filed -- renewed the conditional use on the 2003 and also they sent us a letter saying it expired and we already extended what the -- for the conditional use. so -- and they sent me the -- i'm showing something right here. they sent us the email and then approved it sixth months for us to submit a site permit and we did, ok? i have one of the files -- because the original is not clear. i talked to the building department. they're saying that they don't have the building permit but that's not true. because i have the building permit with me. so because they didn't issue us a new permit number while we
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redo the conditional use. that's why the permit is turned 1998. president goh: can you turn that -- we can't -- 180 degrees. thank you. >> so, and also i talked to the planning because we submitted right on the time what they give us at that time. so when i talk to the planning, they're saying that we didn't submit the right plan because every plan is the same but that's not true. because i have three submittals. because planning told me they only received one submittal but that's not right. i have one by myself because it's not clear but i already showed the original to mr. sanchez. it's showing it very clear, we do the site permit submitted on the 2006 and because they have
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three planner changes. the first one, we view it as jesse nelson and then they changed it to somebody else and then later on they sent to it somebody else. i have a meeting particularly with the grand planning department last year because i wanted to find out the status. what's happened? why did it take so long? they told me they didn't have a plan. i said no, i have a record. this is on their city commuter. they received our plan but they lost it. they didn't even ask us to redo the conditional use. but that's not fair because we do all the processes -- processing. if they have no comment they should submit it to the building department. why are they holding it so long and then finally they sent us a letter -- commissioner fung: ms. tong,
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you need to answer the following question. why did you wait four to five years? >> actually, because we have a lot of projects that are ongoing. that's while when we file, they already take so long to do the commission and then we changed our -- a few times already. the first architectural project for us was out of town so that's why the project was delayed and delayed. on the conditional use, we already followed all the procedures once they give us the approval and we did. they're saying that if everything is on progress they will continue to give us the extension. and i have a document showing that severing on progress so you guys can tell -- from 2006 we submitted seven, nine, and also 2010, we still have an email with the planning department because i keep
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checking why the status take so long. and then they're saying that we didn't submit anything but that's not true. i have a plan that's already submitted. i have three plans with me. the official is saying that the plan is not accurate. but not right. everything is in there. so if they have any comment they should let us know. it's not just -- you know, passing over for -- and then let us know it's got this approval. commissioner fung: i hear what you're saying on that but you didn't provide any of these documents to us. >> you know what -- commissioner fung: can i finish the comment, please? >> sure. commissioner fung: how are we supposed to track whether this really occurred or not? >> first of all, i didn't plan to do the hearing for tonight because i only do the jurisdiction. because when i filed the hearing -- the first time when i go to the hearing office i got rejected because the clerk told me that i came too early
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and she asked me to come back again and i did. they accepted my appeal. but later on i went back to my office, anthony called me back saying they filed by error and requested me to do the jurisdiction. that's what i did. but after we have a discussion with the administrator, he's saying that we can do the hearing for tonight. that's why i didn't prepare any documents for you guys. but if you want all the documents i can make all the copies and then do the hearing next time. because i didn't prepare for the hearing for tonight. commissioner fung: a jurisdiction request is a hearing but -- you know. >> but as the info, would i get it from victor is not -- because he's saying that only come here, see whether they allow you to do the appeal or not.
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and i ask him do i need to provide all those info? he's saying no. once they agree for you guys to do the appeal, then you provide those documents. >> to clarify, commissioner fung, the issue of the c.u. -- these underlying c.u.'s came up after the issue with our clerks. so the jurisdiction request was filed only and solely on the issue of her interaction with our clerks. all the c.u. stuff came up afterwards. so that's why you may feel you need more documents. >> thank you. is there any public comment on this item? seeing none, commissioners, the matter is submitted -- president goh: i have a question for mr. sanchez.
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so she's mentioning that she has submitted plans. she has the plans in her hand. could i -- you speak to that? >> thank you. scott sanchez, planning department. immediately before the hearing i did review some of the documents that she had. this was the first time i'd seen these materials and if in my first review of seeing them i thought perhaps we should continue the item to allow us for some additional information to be gathered. i informed the executive director. then i saw some additional materials, including an email from our staff saying that we have received these revisions. found an email from our staff saying yes, we've received your reviolations but they're all identical. commissioner fung: they're all
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what? >> identical. for -- there are minor changes in the windows but they did not address the questions. we felt there need to be additional work on the design and we did not get the response we needed from the project sponsor. president goh: what was the time frame for that email after having reviewed the plans? >> i think the jurisdiction requestor maybe put it on the overhead but i believe it may have correlated with the meeting she had with staff last year and it was a summation of where we were at this point. i don't know the previous communications but this was just one they saw and i thought with that i didn't see the benefit of continuing that to allow for additional information when it seemed pretty clear that the applicant was not providing to the department what neigh needed and i think as commissioner
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fung pointed out, we're not even days or weeks or years into the project. this was a 1998 application. we're more than a decade away. president goh: ok, thank you. commissioner fung: as an aside question. is the site remediated now? >> i do not have that information before me but i could find out and report back. president goh: thank you. commissioners? commissioner fung: in this particular instance, the project itself, it's an empty lot and it was a gas station and it's been under remediation for as many years as i've been driving past its.
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the proposed development and the permit application has to be based on the conditional use in this particular instance. what may be before us is whether we find that the department acted incorrectly in not providing either a continuation or whether there was actually activity of some type. i guess to provide her with some level of greater review or the part of this board we should look at the documentation and make that determination whether we grant jurisdiction. >> mr. fung is the documentation you're referring to documentation as to whether or not this permit is pursuant to the conditional use snorgs commissioner fung: no, it
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relates to submission dates, site permit packages, whether they were submitted as talked about or whether they were identical or whether there was really no forward progress in this particular instance. >> i'm a bit confused. if you were as a board to decide to grant jurisdiction i would still not feel clear in answer to the question of whether or not the board has jurisdiction because of the conditional use. commissioner fung: i'm not sure that i'm reflecting that. i'm looking at this more in light of it's no different than a zoning administrator's determination. >> but what is being requested of you is an appeal of a permit and the permit is, from what the zoning administrator has indicated, related to the conditional use authorization. commissioner fung: i think i
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pushed it too far. vice president garcia: i think we took too much time off. >> are there any other commissioner comments? commissioner fung: if we did that, if there is no other opportunity, they have to start over again. that's my only concern and in light of the fact that it has been an empty lot for such a long time and a issue of housing is probably in general a desirable issue within our city.
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president goh: mr. sanchez do you want to speak to the expiration of the c.u. or do you want to address commissioner fung's comment? >> i just wanted to say that we've deemed the conditional use to be expired and we would require any conditional use -- i think really what they would be able to salvage here is the building permit application itself potential -- potentially, which has already been denied so i'm not sure of the procedural process for that. with the building cold they go with the building cold of the day. the difference is they get if 1998 building code versus the current building code for the project. president goh: so the c.u. is expired. when did it expire? >> technically three years after the issuance, so in 2006. we had extended to it allow additional time. commissioner fung: 1998.
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president goh: right, till 2006. i'm leaning toward vice president garcia's view on this one. commissioner fung: we have no choice. president goh: did you make a motion? >> shall i call the roll then? commissioner fung: president goh, the project sponsor is raising her hand. president goh: i called the zoning administrator up so why don't you come up for one minute. >> some of the managers are saying that we already expired on the conditional use but that's not true. they give us the approval and we already file everything. it is in progress. so everything is in progress and i talked to the planning department.
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i talked to the building -- they say that it doesn't have a building permit. but i find out showing to them and then they find out the record. they're saying that they forgot to reissue a new permit number. that's why it's still under 1998. also, when i checked with the planning first of all they told me that they didn't have the plan. but i showed them, no, it's in progress. you guys have already, black and white, received a plan on the record. then they told me that they would search on the table and i wait until last year. i particularly make a meeting, go to the planning with the planner. he keeps saying that he doesn't have the plan. i asked him to search on your table. then he did. then he's saying that all the he has said all the plans are the same. i have three plans showing this is in different ways. they have sent us the comments and then they change it.
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>> your time is up. thank you. >> are there other comments or should we vote? >> i understand that her references are to the building permit and the fact is that the underlying entitlement is a conditional use and this has already expired and should they require this, it does not go back to us. >> i think it would be helpful for the department to spend some time explaining that. >> please call the roll. >> the motion is from the vice president to deny jurisdiction.
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the vote is 4-0, jurisdiction is granted and no new appeal is created. -- and the appeal is denied. >> i think we need to take a >> we are resuming the meeting of the board of appeals. we are ready to have item number5 called.
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>> this is the appeal of a tree removal permit for one tree and the conditions placed on the permit for another tree. order number 178895. been >> i am the co-owner of the property. we have owned the property for almost 18 years. i must disclose that i am also the president of my neighborhood association and of worked very closely with the department of public works. one of the things we wanted to do when we bought the property
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it was that we wanted to remove the two trees. we did not like them, even my neighbors wanted to remove theirs. we went by the books as we do with every organization and agency in san francisco. i must disclose that one of the issues in the neighborhood are people removing trees without permits. we would buy the book, we have file the application to remove these trees, we paid the filing fee, we had a hearing. our issue with the night, we had a second hearing and one of the trees can be removed and one must pay -- must stay. i am appealing is because we want to put two new trees on the property, on the sidewalk, actually. i understand in the future, the
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board of supervisors will ask to have property owners take care of the trees and not dpw. if i have to maintain the street trees, then i want trees that i really like or the i want. these trees dross nests every single year, which we have to remove. one of the recommendations that was stated by the department was that they requested that we hire an urban tree outfit but we do our own landscaping and our own pruning and vegetation work. but my partner would like to speak but what i'm asking is that you overturn the partial and i'll of removing one of
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those street trees. thank you. >> good afternoon -- good evening, commissioners. i have three counterpoints and would like to make to the responses brief. in regards to the loss -- loss wasps. that having something that is less attractive to them would be beneficial to ourselves and our neighbors. the industry provides habitat to birds. we have many more trees in our neighborhood. we are very close to a park. i don't believe the removal of these two trees and a replacement would deprive the birds. there is a point made that the
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mortality rate edged down trees is higher than that for established trees. that might be the case for those who don't pay attention to trees. we don't intend to disregard the trees. we intend to benefit our neighbors and foster the trees. we have made great improvements to our home. we have actually increased our property tax base that is of a benefit to the city. as a result, we would like to further improvement by improving the front of our house by replacing these two trees. the next point our like to make is that there is a safety concern that i have in as much as across the street when cars parked there, there has been break-ins. most important to note to that
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side of the street. what i believe is that there's no home that fronts that side of the street. the home on the other side, that is the side of the house. there's no actual front of the house which i believe it would prevent a venue for robbery of cars. we have two cars, both have been broken into. we no longer part on that side of the street. we have support from all of our neighbors in the removal of these trees, especially from the neighbor that led to them. thank you. excus>> thank you, good evening. let me say that i do now -- and have worked with him it in the
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past and it is difficult to be on the opposite sides of the case. he is an active member of the kennedy who was often in touch with us when there has been illegal removals' or trees have gotten damage. we appreciate the efforts he has made and his commitment to the neighborhood and to improving his own property. i think the challenges that the city policy really seeks to preserve established trees. certainly one aspect is the mortality rate of younger trees. they are more prone to vandalism, they are more prone to potential destruction by accidents than established trees. there are also fundamentally providing more environmental benefits to the city then young trees. i think that coupled with the fact that san francisco has a reduced tree canopy. we don't have the kind of
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coverage that many other larger cities do and we don't have a lot of mature trees in san francisco and our policy is very preservationist. in this case, a city policy is at odds with the city -- the owners' desire to make an improvement to their property. i can understand wanting to have matching trees but are finding was that one tree had a structural problem that cannot be corrected through pruning so that was granted for removal. the second tree, there was no major deficiencies so our policy is that we should preserve that tree. and stand the concern about the neighbor and wasps. any flowering tree can be very attractive to pollinators including wasps. any tree could be attractive.
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if that is the basis for removal, there are no guarantees and i would suggest that there might be other alternatives. there are companies that can help to try to deal with nesting in trees that don't use pesticides and are environmentally friendly. that would be our preferred course. they wanted to increase the base and size. that is what we recommend and support. our reference in the condition to a 24 inch box was not the tree base in size in the sidewalk, this is the size of the tree replacement box and
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there might have been a misunderstanding if they were inches. we recommend going larger. that reference was to the replacement tree box up ou . >> would it move you at all of this board to the condition that the young trees be maintained and were they to die, then they would have to put in other new trees in perpetuity? >> our code would require that. our code would allow the